My Adoption File


South Korea has been called the “Cadillac” of international adoption for its ethics and legality. Many reformists who criticize sending countries such as Guatemala and Cambodia maintain that if only those programs would be up to the gold standard of South Korea, the practice of international adoption would be fair, ethical, legal, in the best interests of the child, and dignified and respectful toward the birth family.

I am interested in posting my own adoption papers here online in order to publicly document what has really happened in South Korea. Unlike those who are working in adoption agencies, I have no interest in keeping adoption programs open for the sake of my job security. Unlike some adoptees, I also do not find the thought of being the world’s last Korean adoptee a sad thought, either. We should not be mourned as a dying race any more than cloned goats. That is to say, our existence is due not to nature, but a reproductive technology. Our existence is due to paper shuffling.

Although my story does not involve literal kidnapping or trafficking, as many others do, I can document the misrepresentation of my social history and natural family’s circumstances to my adoptive parents, which I believe is common and which ultimately victimizes the adoptee, the birthfamily, and the adoptive parents. I can also document the process by which I became a legal orphan, which is common to ALL international adoptees, and which has lifelong effects on both the adoptee and the birthfamily.

What is legal orphaning?

At its root, all adoptions depend on the rupture of the original family. Legally, this is accomplished by making a child “available for adoption.” This process of legal — not literal — orphaning shapes the everyday reality of the natural family and the adopted person not just at the time of adoption, but in fact, for the entire future. Therefore this practical and necessary component of international adoption deserves sincere and sustained examination.

Because legal orphaning for the purposes of adoption is different from orphaning as it is commonly and intuitively understood (i.e., a child with no family), the American public intermittently becomes outraged when they find out that to the American government, “orphan” does not mean orphan. This is reflected in the occasional shut-downs of adoption agencies that misrepresent the social histories of children, and also in some high-profile cases such as the case of David Banda, the Malawian child whom Madonna recently adopted, who had a living, albeit impoverished, father.

Introducing my legal and supposedly ethical adoption

At the time I was sent to the U.S. in 1972, Korea was also impoverished. Less than 20 years after the Korean War, in the 11th year of the military dictatorship of Park Chung-hee, the country was rapidly industrializing and my father was working in construction. He was also a heavy drinker. There was no treatment program for his alcoholism and no safe house for my mother to take herself and her children to get away from his abuse. My mother was in a situation that could be easily handled in the U.S.: mom goes to safe house with kids for a while, dad gets treatment, family goes through counseling. But in a country lacking in social services, the only solution available for my mother was to relinquish her two youngest children.

Please try to think of this not in terms of far-away Koreans you don’t know, but in terms of the people who are close to you. Please think of any four-and-a-half year old child you love (the age of my sister at the time) or any six month old (my age at the time) and imagine sending them to a foreign country to never be seen again. Please think of any American you know who has ever had to access unemployment payments, the food shelf, or Alcoholics Anonymous or other such services, or someone you love who has been a victim of domestic violence who has accessed a women’s shelter. Now imagine that those services don’t exist, and intead all those Americans who use such services have their children sent off to foreign countries to never be heard from again.That is the reality for families that have lost their children to international adoption.

I arrived with my older sister to Minnesota in September 1972. We were not legally adopted until nearly a year later. However, by Christmas that year, we had contact straight from my Korean mother, who had somehow managed to get our American address from the adoption agency. I take that to be a sign of her fierce love and determination. I take that to be a sign that she did not want to give us away, but that it was sort of a “choice” on the order of, “Do you prefer firing squad, guillotine, or hanging?” I also take that to be a sign that nobody explained to her what international adoption really means (i.e., irrevocable, permanent, and even if birthmothers are promised that they can have contact or photos, there is nothing in place to enforce that promise.)

Wait a minute! Don’t you think it’s pretty strange that under the circumstances (our parents only had us for 3 months when our Korean mother made contact, we were still officially under South Korean guardianship, we were not yet legally adopted, we were not yet U.S. citizens) that my American parents made no efforts at all to check in with the agency to see what was really going on? Maybe crazy, or more likely, from what I can tell about the adoption “community” — perfectly typical. After all, by the time they get their kids, the parents have gone through months of background checks, homestudies, paperwork — and they have also shelled out thousands of dollars for the adoption. They have adopted with sincere hearts and now they want everthing to be fine.

Here I am on my baptism day, just a few weeks after arrival in the U.S.

60baptism_day.jpg

My mom is elated, but clearly oblivious to her child’s emotional state. It seems that, despite her wishes, everything is not fine. Maybe I am trying to tell her that I am not an orphan. There are actually very few adoptees who have no parents and no extended relatives to take care of them. Yet there are many adoptees. So, according to the U.S. government,

What is an orphan?

  1. The child has no parents due to the death or disappearance of, abandonment or desertion by, or separation from or loss of both parents; or
  2. The sole or surviving parent is incapable of providing proper care and has, in writing, irrevocably released the child for emigration and adoption**

This definition seems quite simple, but it is not mentioned here that child may have extended family capable of taking care of them and still be considered an orphan. Also, it is not mentioned in this definition that parents should not be coerced into relinquishing their parental rights, and they should fully understand what “irrevocably released… for adoption” means before they sign. It also should be taken into account that the definition of “proper care” may be problematic because what “proper care” looks like in the U.S. (where all the kids under these laws are going) probably looks different in the sending country. Also, there is no mention here that parents who are not able to provide proper care should have the right to resources so that they can properly care for their children according to their cultural standard. If they still do not want to raise their own children, then they should certainly be able to relinquish their parental rights. Yet how many parents of children who may enter into the international adoption system and may be pegged as “adoptable” are actually getting any aid to raise their families themselves? What is the cost of aid shelled out by an adoption agency to a country? Is it that in exchange for X many children, you can get $Y aid to care for the others in the country?

I was never an orphan.

Now I’ll show you through my personal set of papers how I became a legal — not real — orphan. I believe that the only thing unusual about my papers is that I have them. The only reason I was able to get the Korean papers is because I had permission from my Korean family.

So you see the dilemma — if the agencies require permission from the birthfamily to get the papers, how are most adoptees or adoptive families ever going to see the papers if they haven’t located the birthfamily in the first place?

Here I am documented here on my family registry. In Korea, this is called a “hojuk” and it is a legal document. In the absence of birth certificates in Korea, these documents record births, deaths, marriages, divorces, etc.

For future reference, note that my name is written both in Korean and also in Chinese (Koreans use both traditional Chinese and the indigenous Korean alphabet.) My birthday here is marked on the lunar calendar — as is customary in Korea — as January 24, 1972 (on the solar calendar, that translates into March 9, 1972).

Side note on the usefulness of orphanages: My father registered me — a child who was already sent away — less than a year after I was sent to the U.S. Perhaps this is a documentation of regret. My sister, two years younger than I am, has the same mom and dad and grew up in our family. I believe that if I would have been allowed to stay in the orphanage for just nine more months as a temporary solution, I would have grown up in my family.

Now that you’ve had a look at my entry on the family registry, take a look at my dad’s entry on the family registry:

dad_cropped_hojuk.jpg

Please note that our family seat is the North Korean city of Onyang and the date of my parents’ marriage is listed as 1967, five years before my birth.

How to make a paper orphan

Whether or not purposely falsified, I don’t think any prospective adoptive parents intend to adopt a child who is falsely represented, either about parentage, health, social history, or conditions in their country. I believe that adopters are deeply invested in believing in the power of agencies to accurately represent “orphans,” even though it’s obvious that even Korea, the gold standard of adoption, has not accurately represented all of the children it has sent overseas. Is the risk of sending misrepresented children permanently overseas worth it?

In Korea, an orphan hojuk must be created in order to expedite adoptions. What you can see here is how an adoption that appears to be perfectly legal may be in reality based upon falsified information and fabricated papers, created by the adoption agency and governmental institutions working together.

My Korean mother claimed that she brought me to the orphanage herself, so there is no reason why any facts of my social history should be wrong. Yet here is my orphan hojuk, where we can see how simple yet very important facts began to become fictions. (Please excuse my handwriting on this paper, which I scrawled on there as I translated for myself in utter disbelief.)

orphan_hojuk_cropped.jpg

Let me stress again that without this paper, there can be no adoption. This legal paper is for many adoptees the only legal proof of their Korean existence. Ironically, the children do not legally exist until they enter into the internatinoal adoption process.

This hojuk is the first of a series of papers that is part of the legal orphaning process. Here we see how the legal identity of the adoptee is systematically destroyed simply so that it can be recreated through the Korean papers (and later created yet again through American papers). The X through my name indicates that I have been taken off the hojuk because I was adopted. They made the hojuk with one purpose: so they could take me off it.

Important identifying points where the fake orphan hojuk differs from the real hojuk:

1. Obviously the creator of this document was educated enough to write in Chinese. Yet only my common surname, Jeong, remains in Chinese, whereas my Korean name, Kyong-Ah, bears no Chinese characters and has been reduced to Korean syllables with no meaning making me less identifiable.

2. My family seat, identified as the North Korean county of Onyang on our family hojuk, is listed as the southern South Korean city of Naju on the orphan hojuk — which has no relation to my family at all. This is a completely random yet deliberate fabrication.

3. Perhaps the most surprising thing about the hojuk is that it says that I was sent to the Netherlands. Moreover, four years after I was sent to the U.S., this document was updated to reflect that I had gained my Dutch citizenship and six years later, the record was updated to show that my Korean nationality had been eliminated. This is a deliberate and sustained fabrication.

Once again, regarding the terrible swiftness and finality of international adoption: This orphan hojuk was made on the solar calendar April 10, 1972. Yet Koreans always use the lunar calendar. That means I was tagged for international adoption to a Western country only 20 days after my arrival at the orphanage. So much for family preservation or domestic adoption efforts.

Other Korean papers misname our Korean sisters, all of whom have the same father. Our brother by a different father is not mentioned at all.

Solving lies with more lies

The lunar-solar thing is a perennial problem for adoptees who are return to live in Korea. It is common that neither adoptee nor immigration office official know that while Koreans record their hojuks on the lunar calendar, overseas adoptees’ orphan hojuks are on the solar calendar.

In my case, the lunar-solar birthday thing passed by unnoticed the first time I applied for my F-4 visa, which is a special visa for ethnic Koreans including adoptees which grants people rights that are close to citizenship. I had used my family hojuk, so I had a Korean birthdate on the hojuk and an American birthdate on my passport. However, they caught it when I tried to renew my visa.

In order to resolve my troubles at the immigration office, I had to get my orphan hojuk from my adoption agency since my Korean birthdate is actually a day later on my family hojuk than it is on the orphan hojuk. Ironically, since my whole American identity (and passport) is based upon the fabricated orphan hojuk, and the false birthday on my hojuk matches the false birthday on my passport, solving lies with more lies was the only way I could renew my visa.

However, the problem remained that my orphan hojuk says I was sent to the Netherlands and I have an American passport. So this paper, created for me by my adoption agency in 2006, updates the information to say that I was actually sent to the U.S. 8addend.jpg

The name is of course my current name — not the name my American parents used to adopt me. I think this goes to show that the “truth” of legal identity is extremely susceptible to manipulation and easy to create — and basically depends on whoever is making the documents that day.

Becoming adoptable

Who wouldn’t want to adopt a kid from a background like this?? (Or for that matter, any one of my friends whose English language social histories say almost exactly the same thing.)

social_history1.jpg social_history2.jpg

Although my mother claimed that she brought me to the orphanage first and my sister later with the help of a neighbor, the papers say that she had “deserted soon after giving birth to Kyong Ah” (me). The papers also claim that my parents were unmarried, when according to our family hojuk, they were married for five years at the time of my birth, and that my sister and I were brought to the orphanage solely by our father. My father here is reported to have “realized that any possibility of reunion with the child’s mother cannot be expected in the future,” even though in reality they were married for another 23 years after the adoption and even raised another child together.

Other papers reported that I was “healthy” and did not present any “care or medical problem.” However, my mother told me that she had brought me to the orphanage because my father had tried to kill me. I had been born outside, almost smothered by my father with a blanket, and thrown out of a window. The reason my mother eventually brought my sister for adoption was because when she came to check on me, I was in such poor health that she feared I would die. So she had brought me home again to nurse me back to health. My father allowed it, only on the condition that she would give away another child when she returned me to the orphanage, which is how my older sister saved my life with her own.

Of course none of this family story is reflected in the official record. In the official record my mother looks like a deserter and my father, left with so many children, seems very pitiable, indeed the victim of a heartless woman, and the motherless, deserted, illegitimate children are indeed very attractive for adoption.

How can you tell if a child has been legally relinquished?

Remember how my poor father supposedly had to bring the kids to the orphanage on the same day, since our mother abandoned us the day after I was born? Here we have two relinquishment forms specifically for overseas adoption created on two different days.

(Imagine being forced to sign that the same day your bring your child to the orphanage.)

Here’s my relinquishment form. On this paper, they used the solar birthday and the date of relinquishment is March 21, 1972. relinquishment_form01.jpg

First, notice on the top that there is a word circled and then crossed out. That’s the word for “mother.” First they wrote that my mother relinquished me, and then crossed it out and circled “father.” On the left is my mother’s name — the family name “Lee” in Chinese, and her thumbprint. On the left is my father’s name, all in Chinese, and an oval stamp that appears to bear his name.Now, remember how my father supposedly relinquished my sister and me both at the same time?

The paper to relinquish my sister was created April 11, 1972, twenty-one days after my relinquishment. That corroborates my mother’s story, which is that she came back to the orphanage later to check on me and found me on the brink of death for lack of food and medicine. She asked my father if she could take me back to nurse me back to health, and he said she could, as long as she gave away another daughter when she took me back to the orphanage. That’s how my sister came to be relinquished. Here’s the relinquishment form for my sister:

relinquishment_form02.jpg

Notice this time that the stamp for my father is different and obscured, and his name is written in only Korean this time. My mother’s name is also written in only Korean. I am not a handwriting expert, but it appears that in both relinquishment forms, the handwriting for both the “signature” of my mom and dad are the same. Can I be sure that these are the signatures, thumbprints, and stamps of my parents? Might it be one of them signing for both, or might it be neither of their signatures, but signatures forged by an agency worker?

Side note: Would my American parents have adopted my sister and I if the American adoption agency had seen these relinquishment papers, and decided that they were dubious enough so that they couldn’t be sure that we had been legally relinquished? Would they have adopted us if they could have read Korean and saw that the Korean language papers did not match the English ones? Would they have adopted us if the social history had said, “Wife desperately wants children, but husband is an abusive alcoholic and cannot access social programs”? Would they have adopted us of they knew that the consquences of those mass adoptions would be that today, in South Korea, women who really are single continue to relinquish their children because foreigners have created a system which efficiently cleanses South Korea of its “problems” instead of creating its own indigenous solutions?

What is plain that without any cultural or linguistic knowledge of South Korea, and without seeing the Korean papers or having met the birth family, there was no possible way for them to know the true situation.

Whether the relinquishment is legal or not, with the papers in place, the process can now get started on the American side. Even within the same month that my sister and I are recorded as slated to go to the Netherlands, our American adopters, whom we have never met, have applied for our immigrations as the “immediate relatives” and “orphans,” and we have becoming “beneficiaries” of people who are, to us, complete strangers. 21visa_petition.jpg

Even before the petition is approved, however, we are issued Korean travel visas to go to the U.S. Notice that the line anticipating the date of the “bearer’s return” is completely crossed out.

This is a one-way trip without return.22visa.jpg

As part of the adoption agreement through Lutheran Social Service, my parents had to agree to raise us as Christians. We were baptized in church about two weeks after our arrival, even before we were legally adopted and our names legally changed. It appears that at the last moment, my place of birth was corrected from communist “North Korea” to “South Korea.”

5baptized.jpg

My legal adoption was completed about one year later. There is no indication of where I came from.

62adopt_cert.jpg


After that, the birth certificate was able to be created and falsified. Here there is no indication that I ever had other parents, except that was born in Korea. Once attractively marketed by the adoption agency as “illegitimate,” ensconsed within an American family, I have now become “legitimate.”

3birth_certificate.jpg

Finally, four years after the adoption, I am naturalized as an American citizen. The American adoption, the Korean social death, and change of identity is now complete.

7naturalization.jpg

(Child learns to smile with mouth but still has worried and furrowed brows.)

At the time, I was the same age as my sister when she was adopted. And while I remember that day in the courthouse quite clearly as a 4½ year old, my sister has no memory whatsoever of her previous life in Korea. Her memory of the first 4½ years of her life has been completely obliterated, and this is very common in the adoptee community. So not only have we been legally erased and reconstructed, but also psychically erased and reconstructed.

The lifetime consequences of legal orphaning

The amazing part is that we are ever reunited with our families at all.

With family members and adoptees often separated by literally half the globe, families wishing to rebuild their relationships might consider relocating to live closer to one another. Many adult South Korean adoptees have been able to relocate to South Korea to be with their families. However, moving to what is now a foreign country can be difficult if not impossible for most adult adoptees. A more practical solution for some would be to sponsor the immigrations of their families to the U.S.

However, under the Immigration and Nationality Act 101(b), American adult intercountry adoptees are specifically banned by law from sponsoring the lawful immigration of their natural parents. Therefore adoptees’ paper orphanhood (as it pertains to real family situations) continues to be enforced throughout a lifetime by American immigration law. The global implications of transnational adoption from KoreaIn this short article I have used my own records as an example. But having lived in Korea among many reunited adoptees since 2004, I can attest that these kinds of stories of false representation, as well as far worse — children literally being kidnapped, Korean parents being outright lied to — are commonplace. I realize that I have been very lucky to be able to have the resources to leave the U.S. and come to Korea for awhile. I wish that every adoptee and every adoptive parent would have that opportunity. Yet only 2% of South Korean adoptees have been reunited, and even fewer adoptive parents take the time to live in Korea for an extended period of time so they can understand the language and contemporary culture. What seems morally ambiguous from the U.S. is not ambiguous at all after you’ve sat across the table from a Korean woman who tells you how her children were kidnapped and she had no idea if they were alive or dead or in Korea or not for thirty years, and finally with someone’s help she found them in the Netherlands. It is absolutely heartbreaking. Although statistically people say that the rate that children are kidnapped and stolen for the purposes of adoption is low, I wonder who is setting the rules for how much collateral damage is acceptable? How much everyday, run-of-the-mill fabrication in social histories is acceptable? In a situation where the lifetime consequences are permanent, how much margin of error is acceptable?I believe that the Korean adoption system, which is considered to be risk-free, has historically been full of risk. We know from the KBS program produced only 2 years ago, as well as anonymous chatboards for single women who have recently relinquished their children that the Korean system is corrupt and taking children away from mothers is not a humanitarian act. It was not humanitarian thirty years ago and it was not thirty days ago. It breaks their hearts.

Yet the agencies, which are selling a $25,000 product, continually uphold Korea as so above-board that it doesn’t even have to sign the Hague Convention! (Whereas Guatemala has — obviously international law is prescriptive rather than practical.)

If Korean adoption is the gold star standard of above-board, legal, ethical adoption practice, what must the other programs be like?

Although I suppose each sending country is different in its particular pathologies, as a product of the world’s best international adoption system, I highly doubt that it is possible to reform mass international adoption from anywhere in the world to the point that ethical adoptions can be assured. I believe that the system is so incredibly risky that it confounds me that anyone even engages in it at all.

If Korea is gold, I’d hate to see a lump of coal.

If Korea’s a Cadillac, I’d hate to see a Yugo.

You get the picture.

Click here to read the story of Kimette, an adoptee who was old enough at the time she was separated from her family to remember exactly how she ended up getting sent to the U.S. for adoption, and all the lies that it took to get her there. The story is reminiscent in some ways of Deann Borshay’s story, when she says that the adoption workers told her not to tell anyone that she had been substituted for another child (and of course nobody noticed that she was not the same kid as her parents were supposed to adopt!)

Please click here if you were adopted from Korea and you are interested in doing birthfamily search.

Please read The Aftermath of Abusive Adoption Practices in the Lives of Adoption Triad Members: Responding to Adoption Triad Members Victimized by Abusive Adoption Practices by David and Desiree Smolin.

60 responses to “My Adoption File

  1. You have voiced about every fear living in my heart. The ‘what ifs’ are pretty much endless, aren’t they?

  2. shin song hyuk-aka adam crapser@yahoo.com

    This blog has touched my heart in so many ways,i too am completely and utterly lost when it comes to my heritage,all i know is american way of life i was adopted to the states when i was 4 supposedly ive been adopted 2 almost three times ive never been naturalized,i have no access to any papers or even birth certificates,even with said adoptions,i have no family,because of abusive situations,i struggle with this everyday of my life,but i am optimistic still.i have a dear friend who is in seoul right now for a year her name is elizabeth clodfelter,she is teaching english for a year,she is also the person who sent me this information.i apologize for my lack of punctuation,or scrambled words,i am a bit overwhelmed and want to say so much.thank you for this.

  3. i feel sorry but i am worried about your doccument that openning to the public should be harm you. The privacy resisdent registration number is very important and is closed to the public, because it might be use for crime.

  4. Thanks for the tip.

  5. Too late. I would say your documents have already been used for a crime.

    Thank you, Jane. For this, for your books, for the window to your life that you have given so generously. I am an adoptive mom of two internationally adopted children. I hope you will continue to help us.

  6. Dear Jane,
    I stumbled upon your blog while doing research for a conference paper that I am currently writing on Korean adoptees and their identities in context. Yours’ is by far the best (if not only) evidence of the ‘adoptee paper trail’ that haunts so many of us, and as I don’t have my own to use I was wondering if you wouldn’t mind allowing me to cite you and your Korean adoption paperwork in my paper as evidence for ‘legal orphaning.’ If you would be willing or want more information before making a decision, please contact me!!!

    Sincerely,
    OSM

  7. Hi Jane.

    I came to know you through Julia (Ku, Ji-Hye) who was a close friend of mine in college and thereafter. I read your book as per her request a few years ago and I am sorry that I just now, after losing her, find your blog – because I wish now I had the opportunity to talk to her about it, like we did with your book. She taught me so much about adoption – much, much more than my 5 years as an “Adoption Professional” in both domestic and international agencies (and in working very closely with both birth families and adoptive families — and all too little, with adoptees). What you have to say about adoption, I wish more professionals would hear. What we had come to know as a “process” truly is one created in the best interest of everyone BUT the child. It’s a system that fails children, over and over again. As a person who has struggled through years of infertility, blinded by my own desires for parenthood and family and feeling pulled towards adopting a child, your blog, your story, is like an awakening. I must admit, I feel lost and conflicted between the need for a child and what is moral, ethical, humane. A conflict I wish more adoptive parents would have prior to “feeding the system” that robs their children.

    Thank you for this…

  8. Pingback: Truth and Reconciliation in Korean Adoption « Living in Color

  9. I think your blog is very interesting and important too. I added it to my blogroll.

  10. bark bark! thank you!

  11. Hi Jane,
    very interesting ! I was 7 in 71 when I was adopted from Holt. I forgot all before 7 !
    Maybe I have a bad memory🙂
    Isn’t it time to take care of you Jane.
    You are running after ghosts and regrets but what I see is that you don’t live the present instant.
    I don’t judge neither criticize you, I just have heartache for you. Life is wonderful and so short!
    For us boudhist, future is illusion, past is just experience, only the present matters !
    Take care of you Jane, enjoy life please !
    Pierre

  12. Aloha Jane!
    I have just finished reading “Language Of Blood” I started reading this morning and could not put it down . So I read straight through to the end! (Taking a few short breaks). I have read a couple of books on Korean adoptees. The question that seems to remain unswered (Or even asked) is : “Why?” Why was and is this being done. None of the books and/or articles that I have read seem to answer the question. Is it the obvious, money? If that is so, who is paying and who is receiving the money? And I wonder why it does not seem to be asked?

  13. Pingback: Favorite Blogs « KAD to KAD

  14. Toni Stevens-Oliver

    Jane – I read your book and your blog with much interest. It lead me to mistrust my son’s agency (Eastern) as we began trying to search for his birth family prior to our recent trip to Korea.

    As it turns out, we were not lied to. We met my son’s birthgrandmother and younger brother. The paperwork in the file and the information from his grandmother match. And my son and his family look so much a like, we didn’t doubt we had the right people. Eastern was also very helpful in locating the grandmother and providing translation. We are now in direct contact with her.

    My son is 11 by US counting (13 by Korean counting), which is young for reunion. We are lucky, I guess.
    Toni

  15. teacher4708

    Reply to comment 11. for Park Chang Ho:

    “You are running after ghosts and regrets but what I see is that you don’t live the present instant.”

    Au contraire: our past IS our present, and will be the future pasts of more children if the state of adoption is left to its own devices. Brave people like Jane shine the light on this truth so that others may live as they were meant to be. For those who care about the future of ALL humanity, the selfishness of acceptance is not an option.

    I am proud of Jane for being the standard bearer of an unwelcome message and pioneering true reform, and I am proud to add my voice to her own.

    This campaign to recognize the truth, the WHOLE truth, about adoption and reconcile it in our homelands and abroad is the opposite of misspent and harmful energy. It is optimism incarnate. It is healing – not just for the individual, but for all Korean people.

    http://holtsurvivor.wordpress.com/2009/05/23/disbursed-and-returned/

  16. Excellent article. Bravo for exposing the corruption and coercion that exists in a system where children are sold as “product”.

  17. Pingback: “A generation fights to reform adoption laws” « sarahpark.com

  18. Hi, Jane,

    I also lived in MN for some years for my job. I enjoyed your excellent article. In conclusion, as a Korean, I can say for sure one thing, despite all kinds of corruptions and ill motivations by wrong people, to you and every other adoptee: although I admit there must be some exceptions, “you are better off here by your adopting parents than not being adopted and living in Korea.” You never lived in Korea as an orphan or as an abandoned child. Their life is unimaginably horrible and discriminative throughout the life.

  19. Thank you Dan for your comment. I hope you’ll take the time to read The Language of Blood (피의 언어), because my point is that I was never an orphan, and that parents should receive help so they can raise their own children. Family preservation should be first; international adoption last — that is the principle of all international conventions. If you believe that life is “unimaginably horrible and discriminative” for children who are truly orphaned or abandoned in Korea, I hope that as a Korean, you are doing something to change that.

  20. Katy Harrington

    Im also a korean adoptee. I know my korean name was on the orphan family registry. Im not sure if my name was ever on the real hojuk or not.I know that i don’t have every paper from my adoption. It’s still in korea. I just know my birthmother’s information alittle bit and why she gave me up for adoption. I also have my health papers from my hospital in korea. My adoption agency said i was an orphan when i have a mother and family members in Korea. My korean name was Jang Hye Ree.

  21. Bravo! Interesting…glad that you posted/exposed this info. In fact, a lot of that paperwork looks very similar to mine. I was adopted from KSS and through LSS back in the early 1980’s. I traveled back to Seoul in 2000 when everything was still hush hush etc, however, it was also the beginning of sensationalizing and broadcasting birth family searches, before plots hit public soaps. I too found out that indeed I was not really an orphan. Although S Korea is very advanced in technology and economically, they have a long way to go in advancing their social ways and customs of life. Korean’s have the power and the democracy to stand up and make these social changes. So to Dan I will say, “Actions speak louder than words.”

  22. Yung Hee KIM

    Thank you so much for sharing this information. I am 38 years old and did not start searching for my birth family until 2 years ago because I was always led to believe there was ‘no way to find them’. I was feeling pretty hopeless about my search, but your blog has renewed my motivation. I worry since I am older about whether my birth parents are still alive. Searching has been difficult because I have almost no information to go by (no birth name, no place/city of birth, no birthdate, etc.). Like so many other Korean adoptees, I long for a sense of identity and belonging and wish so much to feel connected.

  23. Pingback: Adoption Disruption Narrative Gets Better…But Could Be Improved | Racialicious - the intersection of race and pop culture

  24. wow. i had never heard about anything like this before, and that is such an eye-opener.

    if any of my friends ever consider adoption, i will be all over them, making sure that something like this never happens.

    thanks for sharing your story.

  25. Just reading this now. Thank you for setting it all out.

    Those of us involved in domestic adoptions have found the same types of lies about our backgrounds. I sometimes think this is why some agencies resist opening the records. When you and your child meet you find out the truth and they don’t look too good. Declaring people unfit mothers and making the child a ward of the state was not uncommon if a birth mom was waffling.

    I have less of an issue with those who adopted long ago. Now, anyone who doesn’t investigate is deliberately turning a blind eye.

  26. This was a very interesting read. I can understand why you are an angry ajumma. =)

  27. Julie Riggleman

    Hi, Jane,
    I read yr blog w/much interest. I am an adoptive parent of 2 wonderful Korean-American children. As a person who has worked in education/social work settings for 28 years, I am concerned that you view US social services as a panacea for social problems. Unfortunately, what I’ve found in my experience, is that the longer children are kept in homes where their parents are abusive to them, the longer they are shifted from family member to family member and from foster home to foster home, the less chance they have of a happy life. I say this as someone who has worked with thousands of children over the years.

    Before we adopted from Korea, I remember reading blogs like yours and thinking, “Maybe we shouldn’t do this.” But when we tried adopting here in the states, we had 2 failed attempts (birthmoms changing their minds). I hope those children are doing well now. One reason we adopted from Korea was b/c we knew the adoptions would not be interrupted and our children would have the stability people need to be happy.

    But I must say that viewpoints like yr own have helped us be as open as we are today. We just returned from a 2-wk visit to Korea. My 14-yr old daughter reviewed her file at Eastern—there was no new/conflicting info, but we did find a picture of her and her foster mom b/f she came and the name of her escort over that we didn’t have—and met her foster mom who cared for her for the 1st 8 months of her life. The agency is helping us search for her birth family. My 15-yr old son didn’t want to look for anything at this time. When we visited Eastern, there were 73 babies in the nursery. The social workers felt that this backlog was due to Korea’s revised adoption policy. They also said they didn’t have enough foster moms. While I understand (somewhat) that Korea wants to keep the children in Korea, it appears that Koreans are not rising to the occasion when it comes to adoption… so what is the solution?

    I’ve always felt that if adoption could be more “open,” that would perhaps be the best solution. Remember the Kahlil Gibran poem, “Our children are not our children…?” It seems that there is no concrete answer. I know only that we continue to pray for our family in Korea, and that we feel blessed every day of our lives that we are a family.

    Thank-you for yr efforts to improve the lives of Korean children. May you find the peace you seek.

  28. Thanks for your message. What is the solution? I think the solution is to give unwed moms a fair chance to raise their own children by working just as hard to support them as the agencies and the govt have worked for 60 years to send us abroad. There are no war orphans anymore, and mothers should be responsible for raising their own children. A social welfare system for Korea. Public education that ends discrimination. I think it’s that simple.

  29. Julie Riggleman

    I definitely agree that they should be given a fair chance to raise their children. When we visited a birthmothers’ home in Korea, there were several birthmoms who were choosing to do just that…but do you think adoption is a legitimate choice? I get the sense that you feel it shouldn’t be an option: “…mothers should be responsible for raising their own children.” What if they honestly feel they are not able?

  30. You wrote, “What is the solution? I think the solution is to give unwed moms a fair chance to raise their own children by working just as hard to support them as the agencies and the govt have worked for 60 years to send us abroad. There are no war orphans anymore, and mothers should be responsible for raising their own children. A social welfare system for Korea. Public education that ends discrimination. I think it’s that simple.”

    I agree with everything except that last sentence. Ending discrimination and the cultural stigma against unwed mothers and adoption will not be simple and will take a least a generation Korea. In the meantime, children in orphanages who have not been adopted domestically in Korea languish because the Korean government has chosen to placate anti-international adoption groups by artificially reducing the number of international adoptions. They are doing this by limiting the number of exit visas.

    I applaud your work to reveal the corruption that exists within adoption. At the same time I hope you recognize that your story is not the norm.

    Hopefully we will soon reach that time when single mothers in Korea feel they have the resources and support to keep and raise their children. Until then, I hope you will keep in mind the best interests of the children who have been relinquished and currently await international adoption (because no has adopted them domestically). It is not fair to these babies to be caught in this political mess.

  31. Julie Riggleman wrote: “I get the sense that you feel it shouldn’t be an option: “…mothers should be responsible for raising their own children.” What if they honestly feel they are not able?”

    I think this is a good question and I would be interested in your answer as well.

  32. So you’re saying your “real” mother is the one that gave birth to you… not the one that raised you with loving care.

    It’s very sad that you were taken from your mother, and it’s unfair. But it’s also unfair for you to imply that your adoptive mother was ignoring how you felt about all this, and for you to say that she was oblivious to your “emotional state”. You were 6 months old! Every single 6 month old in the world sobs as if their heart is breaking, usually because they wet their pants!

    I’m sorry, but you are treating your adoptive parents extremely cruelly. How do they feel about this? Have you asked? Have you thought about *their* emotional state? Don’t you think they feel betrayed by their daughter? Don’t you think they wonder if you even love them? You mentioned your birth mother in nearly every paragraph. You mentioned your adoptive mother maybe twice, and then only disparagingly.

    I’m sorry, but don’t you think you’re being unfair? Your *real* mother is the one who raised you, not the one whose crotch you emerged from.

    How do I know? I was adopted. My parents are my parents. Maybe I have some parents in Russia, maybe I don’t. I don’t care if I do or not. I don’t care if they’re nobility or homeless alcoholics. They’re just some people across the world that I happen to share some DNA with. I share everything else- my habit of chewing my hair, the crookedness of my smile, my adoration of all things TVLand- with my *real* family. The ones who adopted me years ago. The ones I love.

    The ones you don’t appear to love.

  33. To Annie:

    It is a blessing that you were adopted by such a wonderful family. From your description, this is how an adoption should ideally work out. Unfortunately, this is not the case for all adoptees. Jane, like many adoptees, never felt like she fit in because her parents chose to ignore her very real physiognomic/ physical (obvious on the exterior) and emotional (not so obvious) differences thus refusing to accept her in her entirety and denying to validate her existence. Perhaps the distinction that is being overlooked in this instance is differences in racial features. If you are an adoptee of color or possess other blatant physical traits that signify that you are not Caucasian, people notice. Sure, there are adopted Caucasian children who don’t look like their adoptive parents/family, but that happens even within full blood families as well. Any child that already comes from a completely different culture, language and society is dealing with a lot of emotional upheaval. The last thing he/she wants is to stick out in such a way as to magnify the differences.

    I would also like to point out that not all adoptive parents are as capable and stable as yours appear to be. This results in myriad forms of abuse, including emotional trauma and neglect, which are every bit as harmful as physical or sexual abuse but less noticeable to others and oftentimes even masked under the guise of guilt so that the adopted child feels as if he/she somehow deserves ill treatment.

    I would also like to share some of the details of my adoption with you:

    My adoptive parents got married very young in order to run away from the dysfunction in their own families. As their marriage fell apart, they decided that maybe a child could save their marriage so they opted for adoption. Over the course of a year while they participated in a home study, visits from social workers and lots of paperwork and interviews, they decided to go ahead with the adoption. At any time they should have realized that their struggles (low self esteem, eating disorders, depression, poor communication, extramarital affairs, codependency, nightmares, etc.) were not an ideal environment in which to raise a young, already fragile child. In 1974 I arrived from Korea and needless to say, my presence could not save their marriage. After 5 years of my adoptive father going on business trips as often as possible, my mother hitting me (hard enough to leave bruises), etc. they divorced. Let me assure you, divorce is no picnic for the child involved even in a more stable environment. My parents’ divorce was not amiable.

    After the divorce, my very distraught and emotionally unstable mother continued to hit me when she was even around. In grade school I had to fend for myself with regard to finding food and doing laundry. Sometimes a meal consisted of cookies. I also had no idea how to do laundry. Eventually she kicked me out and told my father that if he didn’t take me in, she would give me to the State. My father, who lived in another state, did agree to take me in and that is when the real abuse began.

    I moved into a household with my father, his new wife and her son. Little did I realize I was not wanted. My father’s second wife did not like me and was not shy about letting me know it. She had my father build a partition at one end of the house that was about a yard and half wide. I lived in that space on a cot for months on end. I did chores to earn money so I could buy my own groceries and then prepare my own food. This was when I was in 8th grade during one of many isolation plans my father’s wife outlined in writing for me. Mostly I lived off of chicken bouillon, bread, milk and apples because I didn’t know how to cook. Another time she made me dress in items from our cleaning rag basket. I had to remain on one square tile of the floor and I was grilled for hours as she repeatedly made me admit that I would have nothing if it wasn’t for her and my father. Another time she took off her wedding band and forced it on my hand insisting that ‘now daddy and princess can go off into the sunset and live happily ever after’. If I accidentally broke something, she forced me to stay up for most of the night until I admitted that I broke the item ‘on purpose’. It would start out that I would not admit I had done anything purposefully. She would grill me for hours screaming “You are lying through your teeth!” until I finally relented out of sheer exhaustion. One time she had my father hold me down while she screamed in my face. Then she shoved a camera in my face and took my picture and told me “this is what ugly looks like!” Where was my father during all of this? Good question. Sometimes what a parent does NOT do can be just as harmful. For 12 years she terrorized me. She told me I was killing my father and that if he had a heart attack, I was not welcome at his funeral. I hope you will understand if I do not consider my adoptive parents as my “real” parents. I am desperately looking for my birth family. I have to believe that they loved me because that is the only thing that has gotten me through life. I ask you to please keep in mind that when someone else has put personal details of their life out into the public spectrum, it is easy for someone else to be judgmental. Don’t be one of those people.

  34. Jane,
    I was wondering if you or any of the other people who have shared on your blog have any input on naturalization.my adoptive parents(both sets) have refused to help in this process. Because i have very little documentation, no family registry or birth record. it seems impossible. i was adopted in 1979 thru holt along with my biological sister-Shin Song Ah, to Michigan. We lived with an adoptive family for 5 years before they relinquished there adoptive(3) and biological children(5) back to the state.we then floated seperately thru group homes and foster care. My sister and i were split up and i am yet to be able to find her. she is estranged from her second adoptive family. My second adoptive family had( 3) adoptive and (7 )foster children. in 1991 the parents(Thomas Francis Crapser) and (Dolly-Jean- Crapser) were arrested for sexual and physical abuse. i did not testify against them because i was told i wouldn’t become a citizen.
    which didn’t matter, because i was kicked out on the street at 16 directly following my adoptive parents trial where they received probation and a 5000. fine. for 12 out of 24 counts of child abuse and criminal mistreatment= gagging,clubbing,punching,choking,and a multitude of other heinous crimes including rape,sex abuse. I am now battling a seemingly uphill battle with the dept of immigration and naturalization. I only know life here in the United States,Even if my documents were in order, i cannot get citizenship because i am a convicted felon, because my adoptive family prosecuted me for breaking into there home after i was kicked out on the street, to retrieve my clothes and korean bible that i got when i was in the orphanage.My adoptive parents tried to beat every bit of korean out of me, and most of my friends would consider me “whitewashed” fortunately god gave me a brain and the ability to work with my hands. because of all the fallout from 9/11, homeland security has made everything extremely difficult if you are foreign born. I guess i fall between the cracks. I cannot even get a replacement social security card,passport or replacement drivers liscence, without a “certified” copy of a foreign birth certificate. all of my research,(including talking to people at holt international in korea, and eugene oregon) has only gleaned that korea does not use “birth certificates” but instead ” family registries”. However, If your birth parents didn’t want to leave any information, they didn’t have to. The only documents i have just say that my birth mother was “amerasian” had curly hair, and walked with a pronounced limp. All in all, i guess i am a lost and broken korean orphan, and writing on here and reading all the other korean adoptees stories is as close as i will ever get to knowing”my people”. Thank you all for all that has been shared. for over half my life i thought i was alone. And to all the critics- please don’t judge, unless you have personally felt and dealt with the dispair,and strife of spending your lifetime alone,out of place,and in the end unwanted.This wasn’t the life i would want for anyone. If it wasn’t for myself wanting the best and everything i never had, for my son, i’m sure i would have commited suicide years ago.god knows i wanted to. sometimes i wonder what my chances would have been on the streets of korea. maybe better maybe worse. I hope that more korean adoptees who have ever felt alone will reach out to each other and help to heal. thank you all…..

  35. Obviously there are ethical problems that need to be discussed and fixed but your statement that there’s too much of a risk and that adoptions should be obliterated is an extremely privileged statement. You are very lucky that when your birth mother cared enough to try to make contact. This is *NOT* the majority. No child should be kidnapped to pad the wallets of officials who run orphanages, obviously, but the idea that all, or most, of these children have loving parents that are just trying to reach them is a fairytale.

    I was adopted. I know very well the sense of loss and confusion and being set adrift. I know it is not ideal. But if I had to pick between living five years in an orphanage in the hopes that someone in my family decided I was worth reclaiming versus being put in the stable environment I was placed …. It’s not a hard choice.

    You stated several times how this problem could be fixed: Better social programs, such as shelters for women, AA systems, stigma-free rehab centers. But then you continue to say that adoption is too much of a risk for the birth family and should be dismantled rather than these programs created. Again I think that is a **hugely** privileged statement. I’m happy that you’ve found a birth mother that was desperately trying to reach out for you. I don’t think you are alone, and I don’t doubt that some women are lied to. But I do think you are painting this situation with one brush.

  36. Thanks for sharing your story. Its fascinating. I’m embarking on a birth family search – and I appreciate your openess.

  37. I have just found this and we are all blessed by your openness. I continue to search on what little info I have not knowing whether the dates, places or names are true. Unlike you, there are no names of anyone other than those from Holt involved in the process. Your tips and hints will be most helpful as I try to navigate the adoption agency and its lies.

  38. just wanted to share this. makes me feel better when i am down. he’s an amazing person. could have been me or any on of us. i am humbled and my heart goes out to him…

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  40. sunhai olivia jang

    dear 경아
    First i am so sorry to hear that the pain you go through. I am from korea as well. well i am not adoptees but i feel like sure orphan as wwll. due to my parents.
    I am really sorry about pain and cofussion u wrnt through. i do not completely umderstand it but particially understanf that when i want to be white person when i was in the ARMY when noone stick out for me.
    경아 if u want to find your birth patents.please email me. i
    know

  41. sunhai olivia jang

    dear 경아
    First i am so sorry to hear that the pain you go through. I am from korea as well. well i am not adoptees but i feel like sure orphan as wwll. due to my parents.
    I am really sorry about pain and cofussion u wrnt through. i do not completely umderstand it but particially understanf that when i want to be white person when i was in the ARMY when noone stick out for me.
    Dear
    경아 if u want to find your birth patents.please email me. i
    know

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  44. I just stumbled on this blog and am quite surprised at all the fabrications. But i applaud your efforts to exposing the system. I think one of the issues is that koreans are not open to adopting a child. There seems to be such a big stigma of adopting, if children were adopted in their native country it would be easier for the child integrate back and find the birth parents.

    Actually I am concern about how you feel towards your adopted parents because I adopted a child myself (not from korea) and there is some times the thought of how the child will think about me when he grows up.

  45. Interesting. I was adopted in the US, and also born in the US. The US adoptions agencies do the same thing. Information about my biological mother was changed. Her age was changed by several years, and the agency claimed she was from a different town in the opposite direction. The adoption agency is driven by money. They aren’t helping real orphans find homes, they fraudulently create paper orphans so they can be sold to other people.

  46. I am adoptive mother. I did not adopt because I wasn’t able to conceive, but because my children needed homes. In one case, my daughter was born with a cleft lip and palate and was relinquished on the second day of her life to Holt Korea. The hospital records support Holt’s records. My son was abused by his birth mother and abandoned by his birth father. Social services records support Holt’s records. Both of my children would have faced unimaginable lives. Yet I grieve for the loss of their home culture. I do what I can to honor their culture and celebrate the wonderful Korean heritage that they bring into our family. We have made every allowance for our son and daughter’s birth families to contact us, and we have never heard from them. I am thankful for your perspective, as I agree that if I has been contacted by a family member of my children, I would have had a hard time finalizing their adoption. For us adoption was never about building our family. It was always about opening our home and being willing to be a family to a child who needed one. There are millions of children who need homes and families who can provide for their needs.

    I am so sad to learn that your life has been riddled with lies and inconsistencies. It does seem like so many ‘what ifs’ hang over you I pray that you will find peace and will feel the love of your family some day. I urge you to consider that not all situations are the same. Some children do not have much hope outside of an adoption. Families being willing to open their homes is a good thing; as long as we are willing to take our own needs out of the equation and pursue (at all costs) what is best for the children. Be blessed for your bravery, honesty and willingness to pursue justice!

  47. Pingback: “Stuck” Writing About International Adoption? Interview an Adoptee | Seoul Shakedown

  48. sandra wraight

    Hi Jane,
    I was recently in Korea (September 2013) and spent a short amount of time at Eastern Welfare Society.
    While there I observed at least 40 babies aged newborn-9 mths of age and also approx. 20 toddlers 9ths-2.5 years that are currently living their lives in the orphanage. All children appear to be well cared for but are segregated into 2 rooms and are in cots with a few toys.

    I have read your blog (& also your books) and can understand your frustrations of what happened to you and your sister but wonder if you should be more directing your concerns to the Korean government and their lack of support for birthmothers or families in need in South Korea rather than targeting the overseas programs.

    The impact of your protests are that wait times to travel. In regards to Korean adoption have gone from 8 weeks (2005) to 2 years (2013). When we went to Korea in 2005 to bring home our beautiful boy he was 4.5mths. When we went in 2010 to bring home our next beautiful boy he was 11.5mths. We were so lucky that our 2nd son during this time only spent his first 6 weeks in an orphanage and then was placed with a foster family.

    Families that are traveling now (2013) the children are 2.5 to 3 years old.
    The impact on these children are massive!! and I am sure others can add to this on the social/emotional lifelong impact that this is having. The orphanages are struggling to find foster families as the wait time is now so long. These precious babies are lying in an orphanage cot as they have no foster family to go to.

    As far as I could see there were the same amount of children waiting for a family as 2005 and 2010. The only difference-they are waiting longer- due to the fact that exit permits are restricted.
    So same amount of children to be adopted but less exit permits-I suppose it looks better on the Government records but reality is that these little ones could be in a (hopefully) loving family rather than an a orphanage.

    In the interim I hope that you realise that your protests are directly affecting the babies and toddlers that a currently in limbo in South Korea.
    As the Korea Government has now restricted exit permits; these little ones now wait for years rather than months to be joined with a family.
    I know that for some the adoption process has not been ideal but for others it has.

    As an adoptive mum I take on board all that you have said and honestly it does make my heart break but PLEASE take into consideration the impact on the current children in Korea.
    I truly hope that one day the Korea government will support families in need in South Korea.
    Best wishes to you.

  49. Pingback: Adoption papers | Our Ancestors

  50. I found this very interesting and it makes me wonder if I should delve more into my records or accept the dead end paper trail Holt has told me. Please help me if you can. I currently live and work in Korea.
    Thanks

  51. I read through your blog after watching your program on discovery ID. I was having trouble understanding why you would cease all contact with your adoptive parents while extolling the virtues of your poor Korean mother who just was bamboozled into giving you up after your father tried to murder you. Then you go on to say they stay married for another 23 years and raise another child?? Wow, and you want to preach “social programs” to keep families together? I’m just trying to understand, which social program do you institute to stop a violent alcoholic father from trying to kill his child. Poor you, you were taken to America and sent to college but your adoptive parents didn’t understand you. You are a bitter unappreciative whiner who should really reevaluate your perspective. I would hate to have you working for me as a Korean child in an abusive home.

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  53. Sharon so young

    Pls email this report to me so I can fully understand all of the what’s and if’s as to say.. I am a kroean adoptee from the uk, and I am very interested in working out if I hav false documentations

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  55. I’m sorry you’ve come to these conclusions and have so many unanswered questions. However, the war you wage on your adoptive parents is heartbreaking and cold. Adoptive parents put their trust in the system, and in 1972, we didn’t have the tools to research quite as well as you have been able to. I am sure your “parents” asked questions and were given answers, answers the agencies wanted them to hear. How is this their fault? They seemed to have raised a bright child and I’m sure most of this work is thanks to them, be it an education, or any other means you used that I’m sure they paid for to ensure their daughter had a good life. You should feel free to question, to research to want to know your heritage, but do you ever take into account the way you’re going about it and how that makes your adoptive family feel? To me you just sound like a hell bent jaded individual who clearly needs to exercise some help. Your issue is with the korean government, stop painting everyone around you with the same brush. Your birth mother remained married and had another child, she could withstand 23 years wth a man that supposivly beat her and wanted to murder you, but she couldn’t keep you safe? She couldn’t even keep you. But she could keep another and stay with that man many years. Do you ever think she might be lying to you as well. Maybe that she reached out feelin regret for what she had done and that may be the only selfish reason she did? Yet here you sit, not questioning her and completely crucifying your adoptive parents for not asking questions, which im sure they did, and got the same answers from the Korean government you did. I hope you find the peace you’re looking for, and I hope those around you no longer suffer your wrath of selfishness.

  56. Ah but after more reading I see you just have a complete disdain for white people in general. You really do enjoy painting with one color.

  57. Pingback: Threats to Deport Korean American Adoptee Highlights Major Loophole in Immigration Law | Reappropriate

  58. Pingback: Adoption Trafficking headlines: who is listening? | laramie harlow: researcher-adoptee

  59. Pingback: Are you a paper orphan? Do you have false adoption papers? Do you want to share your experiences? | Swedish Korean Adoptees' Network (SKAN)

  60. Veteran desperately searching for his twin children.
    Am helping someone locate his twin son and daughter. Came across your blog and thought you would have ideas on searching for his children. Thank You for sharing your life’s journey.Searching for my twins…
    By Allen Thomas
    My name is Allen Thomas and I am looking for my son and daughter, whom I’ve not seen since they were lost to me over 40 years ago. I was an American soldier in South Korea, met and married their mother, had our twins, and then lost them when I had to return stateside and she would not return with me, or allow me to take the children. By the time I was able to make arrangements to go back for the children and fight for custody, she had adopted them out and would not give me any information regarding their whereabouts. I have been searching for decades, unsuccessfully; but have decided that perhaps Facebook could help me to find them. Please pass this around and help me find my children. Thank you. Fraternal twins – boy & girl – born in Seoul, Korea, at Songnim Gynaecology, Namyong-dong, Seoul, on September 10, 1967. The twins were adopted out by their mother in the late 1970’s. Their names were James Allen Thomas and Sandia Lynn Thomas. The mother’s name was Sun Kun Thomas, born December 5, 1942. Father, Allen Thomas, was U.S. Army. We have photo’s, birth certificates, and other legal documents. Would very much like to find both children.

Thank you for visiting my blog. I no longer have time to update this blog regularly, but I appreciate your comments, even though I cannot respond to all of them. All comments (except spam) have been allowed to go through unmoderated since June 16, 2014. Any comments you see prior to that date have been read and approved by me. Thanks again, and wishing you peace and blessings.

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